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Carmen Freudenthal, Dazed Volume 2, Issue 54

Legendary Moments: When Katie Shillingford Met Björk

Dazed & Confused's senior contributing fashion editor recalls meeting Björk back in 2007 for a shoot with Bernhard Willhelm

The editors of Dazed & Confused have worked with some of the world's biggest legends in art, film, fashion and music. Ahead of September's Dazed x Ray-Ban event with Kim Gordon and Bobby Gillespie, we asked them to recall their most memorable moments at the magazine for us. Here, senior contributing fashion editor Katie Shillingford reminisces about meeting Icelandic visionary Björk…

“The October 2007 issue of Dazed featured Björk on the cover with Belgium-based fashion designer Bernhard Willhelm to celebrate his costumes for her summer tour. I flew to Iceland, where we shot the cover, to witness the spectacle of the shot and talk to Björk and Bernhard about their collaboration. It must have been quite a last-minute thing as I can’t remember being that nervous until I was welcomed into her house by Bjork herself and the three of us hung out in her kitchen while she made us tea. It was only then that I wished the kitchen floor would swallow me for not being worthy of such an icon's presence, let alone getting made a cup of tea by her! We sat down, sipped our herbal tea in the living room and had a good old chat. Björk and Bernhard were good friends and soon made me feel at home... and later that night I still couldn't quite believe that it had actually happened!

The next day the cover shoot continued. I was just observing as Bernhard styled his brilliantly bold silhouettes, and what a show it was – Björk and her all-girl brass band gallivanting across the Icelandic moonscape, head-to-toe in luminous neons, the band heartily playing their instruments despite the unpredictable apocalyptic weather. I'd never been to Iceland before, and had never experienced a landscape so beautiful but brutal. When I came home that night I couldn’t move my fingers – they had to be thawed out – so God knows how those amazing girls were playing trumpets and trombones without their fingers dropping off! The whole trip was a dreamlike experience that I will never forget."